Louise Erdrich's newest novel, "The Round House," hasn't even been out a month yet and it's already in the running for one of literature's top awards.
The nominees for the National Book Award were announced this morning, and the list is stellar and varied--just as you'd expect.
In fiction, the nominees include two novels about the Iraq war, and a collection of stories by a writer who just won a Genius Grant (Junot Diaz). In nonfiction, contenders include a biography of an American president, narrative reportage about life in an India slum, and a memoir written by a journalist who died while covering the war for the New York Times.
Poetry nominees include a poet who grew up in Minnesota and has published with Minneapolis' Graywolf Press (Suan Wheeler). Children's literature includes a nominee by debut novelist William Alexander of Minneapolis.
Here's the whole list, with links to our reviews. Be glad you're not a judge. The awards will be presented Nov. 14.
Louise Erdrich, "The Round House"
Junot Diaz, "This is How You Lose Her."
Dave Eggers, "A Hologram for the King."
Ben Fountain, "Billy Lynn's Long Halftime Walk."
Kevin Powers, "The Yellow Birds."
Anne Applebaum, "Iron Curtain: The Crushing of Eastern Europe."
Robert A. Caro, "The Passage of Power."
Domingo Martinez, "The Boy Kings of Texas"
Anthony Shadid, "House of Stone."
David Ferry, "Bewilderment."
Cynthia Huntington, "Heavenly Bodies."
Tim Seibles, "Fast Animal"
Alan Shapiro, "Night of the Republic."
Susan Wheeler, "Meme."
YOUNG PEOPLE'S LITERATURE
William Alexander, "Goblin Secrets."
Patricia McCormick, "Never Fall Down."
Eliot Schrefer, "Endangered."
Steve Sheinkin, "Bomb: The Race to Build--and Steal--the World's Most Dangerous Weapon."